For ten years, I sat on this manuscript of mine (with a couple limited releases for what amounted to family and friends). It wasn't something I advertised, wasn't something I particularly pushed. It got a handful of sniffs from various publishers, but for one reason or another (didn't like their copyright policy... I didn't want to “sex it up” or “clean up the language”, I didn't want to alter the content, etc...) the deal never took off.
But at the same time, sitting on it was going nowhere... and it's not right to keep things going nowhere.
Over the last month, I have been gathering information, getting quotes, and negotiating with a printer... and I think it's as good of a time as any to actually make this a reality.
Of course, I don't expect you to blindly throw me money, nor would I want you to do so unless you liked the project. So, at http://chemiclord.wordpress.com/the-broken-prophecy/ you can read a 5 chapter preview of the novel in question.
So... what's it about?
"What you see doesn't affect what you believe... what you believe affects what you see."
The book (and it's following novels) is based on the above observation, as well as the lengths people will go to alter the reality around them to fit the preconceived narrative they desire.
Religion and how it is treated within The Broken Prophecy (both for good and for ill) is simply the canvas in which I paint this mission statement, simply because religion is one of the most gregarious abusers of this. Christian history (which is part of my background and the major inspiration for the major religion within the setting) has a very long history of quelling certain voices and outright silencing what narratives of Jesus's life were told.
But religious institutions are hardly the only place we find such... narrative gerrymandering, if you will. In politics, the media, or even in interpersonal relationships, we frequently shape our interpretation of events to fit what we want them to be as much (if not more) than what actually occurred. Events are made to fit the "role" society has assigned to the players, rather than force us to reconsider what we "know" of the people involved.
This habit of the human condition really is the driving theme (though not really the most visible) of the setting, and something that I want people to think about as the story plays out.
So... why a Science-Fiction setting?
There's a handful of reasons, really. The inspiration of science fiction really flickered when I was eleven, and my uncle brought out what amounted to a dinky telescope out to my grandfather's farm in West Michigan, and we all got to take a look at the Andromeda Galaxy... and I was hooked. Here was this place, so very far away yet so close in the grand scheme of the universe, that had to be filled with millions of worlds like ours. Even before I learned about the Drake Equation, the seed had been planted.
Another reason is that science-fiction settings is a ripe breeding ground for what I think is the entire point of literature and creative thinking; to challenge ourselves and make us think about what we are, who we are... then ask what we can and should be in the future. It used to be that way in science-fiction... I want it to be again.
Finally... science-fiction is the largest sandbox I can think of. The only constraints are the ones you apply to it. It invites exploration, it asks you to step outside your comfort zone and entertain something different from the world you know. I find these things important.